Pearson Pandas’ Penny Drive Supports Breast Cancer Awareness

admin team covered in silly stringStory by Kara Lynn, ITRT at Pearson Elementary School

The students and staff of HM Pearson Elementary presented a check for $1107.74 to the Cherry Blossom Breast Cancer Foundation.  Each day in October, students brought in pennies for Breast Cancer Awareness.  Mrs. Leavell’s 5th-grade class, which brought in the most, celebrated by covering Principal Mark Marchinetti and Assistant Principal Jamie Edgar with silly string!

The Cherry Blossom Breast Cancer Foundation serves Fauquier and Loudoun Counties.  With this donation, they are able to supply baskets to post-surgery patients to help make recovery a bit more comfortable.



Positivity Permeates Greenville Elementary

By Ange Byrd, FCPS Parent and Substitute Teacher


Tim Gardner


I have been substituting at Greenville Elementary School. I wanted everyone to know from an outsider who has no kids there, that this school is incredible! When you walk in, Mrs. Day greets you and cannot make you feel more welcome. Truly. I cannot stress enough how important the front office is at our schools. She is a breath of fresh air!

The admin there, Tim Gardner and Sydney Kelly, are always present in the halls. I see them multiple times a day when I am subbing, and they are continually positive and encouraging. You do not understand how much that means when you are substituting to see the administration in the halls and available if you have any questions. If you ever do any county-wide meetings talking about things that subs need to want to come back and work at a school, please let all the schools know how much this is appreciated.

Staff morale is different at GES… When you walk down the hallway, there is positive energy from the staff. They are smiling and always make me feel right at home there. I think having administrators who support them and keep their spirits up makes a huge difference. They should be commended. It is not an easy time right now at the schools, and the way that Greenville is operating is amazing! What they do there matters and the difference in their school shows on a daily basis.

Bradley’s Trunk or Treat Event Lifts the Fog

By Joy Fredericks, ITRT at C.M. Bradley Elementary

C.M. Bradley’s Trunk or Treat on Friday was a sight to behold. The kids and their parents were out in force in a who’s who of the tiny and sticky. Normally quiet students came alive as they dragged tired parents from car to car, giggling and asking for treats. The costumes were on point. I saw an entire family of Mandalorians, more Marvel superheroes than I could count, and Cindy Martin’s granddaughter was so sweet in her ladybug costume that I definitely got a cavity! Ms. Froehlich was parked next to me – with Piggy, Gerald, the Pigeon, and the rest of the Mo Willems crew. Mrs. Hanlon handed out books, and Mrs. Eldridge was there in costume with her entire family, who were also dressed up. My husband (a complete introvert) braved the crowds to help me install the giant inflatable dragon that breathed fire from atop my car. The mom in the car parked on the other side of mine was dressed in PJs and a bathrobe; she told me her costume was “teachers after school.” I felt that in every ounce of my being! I lost count of the students who asked if I was handing out computers and who, despite me not being in a costume, told me I looked familiar but didn’t actually know who I was. This year has been clouded by an indescribable fog that seems to have settled over all of education, but on Friday, for two short hours in the C.M. Bradley parking lot, that fog lifted. It was the most normal I have felt all year. It was busy, happy, and exhausting, but it was good for the soul to hear all that happy in one place!

trunk or treat

C.L. Payne FFA Shines at the Virginia State Fair

By: Grace Page and Stephanie Loring

The State Fair of Virginia was held Sept. 24 to Oct. 3 in Doswell, Va. at the Meadow Event Park. Every year, the fair is filled with fun rides, funnel cake, and an assortment of vendors, but the best part would undeniably be on the other side of the bridge, where the youth agricultural events are held.

This year the C.L. Payne FFA chapter of Liberty High School sent 23 students to compete in various competitions. On September 24th, Meredith Day, Salem Sifford, Hannah Tonkin, and Hannah Winegardner competed in the Jr. Dairymen’s contest and placed 9th out of all teams. Sophomore member Nathan Hoosier placed 8th on the same day in the Lawn Tractor Operators Competition. The Forestry Field Day Event was held on September 27th. The following students competed: Hunter Bean, Andrew Bowers, Justin Bowers, Parker Curtis, Mauricio Guerrero, Noah Hall, Austin Mawyer, Joseph Medina, Cody Owens, Eddie Rodman, Austin Tate, and Bristen Umberger. The junior team placed 7th overall and the senior team placed 10th. 

Meredith Day and Grace Page participated in the Horticulture Demonstration contest on September 28. They demonstrated how to make Fabulous Fried Apples and brought home the blue with their fantastic demonstration. On September 29th, freshman Aly Ryman blew the judges away with her Jr. Agriscience Demonstration on cat grooming and won her own blue ribbon. That same day, Salem Sifford won 1st place with her outstanding Sr. Agriscience Demonstration on how to churn butter.

churning butter

Oct. 1 was the Hippology team’s time to shine, with Lizzy Bosarge, Kylie Cussins, Grace Page, and Kyndal Waln placing fifth overall and Grace placing sixth individually. The C.L. Payne FFA Chapter is advised by Mrs. Erin Burton, Mrs. Miranda Locuratolo, and Mrs. Stephanie Loring. “This has been one of the best state fairs since I began teaching 14 years ago,” said Mrs. Loring. “I am so proud of these guys and cannot wait to see how they continue to grow and excel over the next year.”

FFA Competition

Three Brothers Benefit from Their Learning Spaces

Here’s how a mom describes the learning spaces set up for her first-grader, fourth-grader, and sixth-grader:

“It made all the difference having them in different spaces, quiet, and with everything they need around them! And thank you for the Chromebooks provided to my 2 older ones! That made a huge relief for us since we only had a laptop which would be impossible to share!”

#FCPS1Success – Kindergartener Learns Something New Every Day

Every day I am amazed when I come home from work and my (Kindergarten) son tells me something new he has learned. Last week he retold the story of “Pete the Cat” while using a puppet he had made during his independent work and this week he ‘taught’ me about what a pattern core is that he learned during his live lesson and made multiple examples to show me using manipulatives his teacher sent home. I could go on and on. Every day he is learning something new and is so proud and excited to tell us about it! Way to go Mrs. Dalton for keeping the kids engaged and learning through this virtual platform!

Watch as Wyatt demonstrates his understanding of pattern core.  Way to go, Wyatt!

Students Build Life Skills Through AP Seminar and Research Program

AP Seminar and Research is a two-year program that teaches students to become critical and independent thinkers, writers, and speakers. It’s about learning transferable skills that inform and enhance their academic lives no matter what subject area they are studying.

Student Perspectives

This course sequence prepares students for academic life after high school, for sure.  Those who have older brothers and sisters in college recognize how prepared they will be for what lies ahead. They’ve learned to tackle challenges, to think in ways that will help them achieve success at school, at work, and in life.  Once they’ve mastered the rigor of this sequence, they’re confident researchers, thinkers, writers, and speakers.

Cynthia Pryor (FHS) and Sharon Krasny (KRHS) teach the two-year course sequence.  When visiting their classes, it is evident that students are being uniquely challenged.

We first spoke to Eireann Maybach and Ashelyn Kyne, two of Cynthia Pryor’s AP Research students at Fauquier High.  Watch below as the girls talk about the skills they’ve honed through the courses:

Sharon Krasny’s students would agree with Ashelyn and Eireann. When asked about the ways that they’ve grown through this course, the Kettle Run students cited:

  • researching to find credible information
  • using evidence to support claims
  • writing and presentation
  • time management
  • public speaking and communication

Students often comment that this class is unlike any class they’ve ever taken.  It’s true. Public education has become about transmitting content, often at the expense of facilitating skills development.  Colleges have grown weary of students who can only repeat what they’ve learned; they want students who can think logically and critically about the subjects they are exploring.  That’s what AP Capstone teaches them to do!

View the slideshow below from our visit to Ms. Pryor’s and Ms. Krasny’s classes.

About AP Seminar and Research

First Year 

In the first year, AP Seminar, students learn to study topics through many lenses and from multiple points of view. They learn how to ask essential questions and how to examine topics critically and with a discerning eye.  They become adept at building and deconstructing arguments. They learn to work–together and independently–to create a viable and sustained argument that they can communicate and defend. Students hone their ability to gather and evaluate credible data, then analyze and synthesize their findings to share them with others. In essence, they are learning to be scholars in the truest sense of the word.

These aren’t just academic skills; they’re life skills.  Students learn to backward plan, to create timelines and deadlines, to discern credible from questionable sources, to communicate effectively with others.

Their success in the first year is measured by three performance tasks:  a group research project, an independent research project, and a written exam.  At the heart of everything they do is questioning, gathering, evaluating, and synthesizing information. These are high-level thinking skills. Best of all, the course gives students the opportunity to choose the topics they want to study.  That latitude is a great incentive for learning!

Second Year 

The second year of the program takes these building blocks to the next level.  Students self-select a topic that they are passionate about, and they use the research skills they have learned to write and defend a 5000-word paper.  The entire year is devoted to the planning, researching, writing, presentation and defense of their findings. It’s inspiring to watch them take an idea and run with it.  Their goal in AP Research is to uncover a problem–a gap in their research–they want to test and evaluate. These are incredibly challenging skills!

I call them my Capstone warriors.  These are students who CHOOSE rigor.  I tell them all the time how much I admire them for taking academic risks . . . for choosing THIS as an elective.  It says a great deal about their character. ~ Cynthia Pryor


WMS Student Serves as General Assembly Page

Warrenton Middle School eighth-grader Hannah Cosby was selected to be a page for the Virginia Senate’s 27th district. She reported to Richmond on January 4, 2020, and will serve there until early March.

Hannah will be a part of the legislative process by conducting tours, answering phones, and completing other errands for the Virginia Senate. Hannah will have to keep up with her schoolwork while being a part of the page program.

In Ms. Recker’s 7th-grade civics class last year, Hannah became interested in becoming a page after viewing photos from a Richmond field trip and seeing a page in one of the photos. She asked Ms. Recker about the program and researched the opportunity on her own. She learned about the program in December 2018 and had to wait until August of 2019 to apply. Hannah conducted a great deal of research on her own and couldn’t wait to apply.

Senator Jill Vogel and Assistant Principal Karyn Spahr wrote Hannah’s recommendations. Hannah then met with Senator Vogel in the summer to discuss her application and recommendation letter. Initially, Hannah was upset, thinking she wasn’t accepted because the envelope she received in the mail was small, but Hannah quickly realized she was indeed accepted and was thrilled.

Hannah has been a member of SCA for three years. She has served as the president of the NJHS and as a reader at her church. In addition, she is involved in many extra-curricular activities including soccer, volleyball, swimming, cross-fit, and surfing at the beach.